Things I’ve Learned from Lately #8

“Things I’ve Learned from Lately” is a regular compilation of articles that have made me a smarter social media marketer. Hopefully, they’ll help you, too.

Olympics Offer Learnings for All of Us – Big sponsorships like the Olympics tend to be the focus of big brands, but The Miami Herald columnist Tasha Cunningham explains why we can all take something away from the social media issues that have been under scrutiny over the past two weeks.

Key Takeaway: Cunningham’s article lays out what should be common sense but surprisingly has not been over the course of the Olympics. Social media is about people, and when interacting with people we must always think, be responsive, be respectful and maintain self-control.

Marketing in a Gift Economy Harvard Business Review points out that social media is not cut out for pushing messages to fans and followers. People use social channels to build relationships, so focus not on participating in a market economy but, instead, a gift economy.

Key Takeaway: Social media is about relationships and thinking of someone else. Brands can’t focus on thinking about what social media can do for them. They’ll go nowhere. At the end of the day, the consumer cares about themselves and what you can do for them. Focus on their wants, needs and unfulfilled desires. Then give them the gift of fulfillment. Both the audience and the brand will then benefit.

The Numbers Say It’s Quality, Not Quantity that Matters AllTwitter shares the results of a New York University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology study that found that who your brand’s fans and followers are is more important than the number of them.

Key Takeaway: Reach is not social media marketing’s strength most of the time. But focusing on connecting with the right people and inspiring them to push your brand message forward is how a brand can successfully leverage the space at scale.